January 25, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A Fox News poll released Friday reveals that a majority of Americans consider themselves pro-life, rather than pro-choice, on the issue of abortion.
Of the 900 registered voters who were surveyed, 50% identified themselves as pro-life, and 42% as pro-choice. Five percent considered themselves some combination of the two, and 3% said that they didn’t know. The poll has a 3% margin of error.
While the respondents broke down along party lines, with a majority of Republicans saying they were pro-life and a majority of Democrats saying they were pro-choice, the poll also found a much wider pro-life majority among registered Republicans than there was a pro-choice majority among Democrats.
Sixty-nine percent of Republicans were pro-life, compared to 26% pro-choice; however, only 59% of Democrats identified themselves as pro-choice, compared to 32% as pro-life. Among independents, the margin was 47% to 41% in favor of the pro-life position.
The Fox News poll is one of a series of recent national polls uncovering a growing pro-life majority among Americans. A Gallup poll released in May of 2010 found that 47% of Americans favored the pro-life label compared to 45% who viewed themselves as pro-choice.
These results, which were consistent with the pro-life majority that Gallup had found in two previous 2009 polls, led the polling organization to label pro-life “the new normal.”
The Fox News poll suggests a significant reversal of public opinion since 1997, when a poll released by the news channel found that 50% of Americans called themselves pro-choice, compared to 40% who called themselves pro-life.
The recent Gallup poll revealed a similar, although less dramatic, trend. Their 2001 poll had found a 6% margin in favor of the pro-choice position (47% to 41%), compared to the 2% margin in favor of the pro-life position found in 2010.
Gallup author Lydia Saad attributed the results of the May 2010 poll partially to “increased political polarization,” suggesting that Obama’s presidency may be a contributing factor to the new trend.